Anyone interested in the world generally can't help being interested in young adult culture - in the music, the bands, the books, the fashions, and the way in which the young adult community develops its own language.
Every writer has to find their own way into writing.
People can say what they like about the eternal verities, love and truth and so on, but nothing's as eternal as the dishes.
New Zealand is the only country I know well enough to write about. It can sometimes lead to complications.
I don't want to die, really. I'm interested in what happens next, so I've got to keep on.
My theory is that I decided to be a writer when I was about seven, but of course it is not as simple as that. Like most writers, I had to work at other things to earn a living and wrote mainly in the evenings, often very late at night, for many years.
Try not to become disappointed if someone doesn't like a story you've written. Stick up for your ideas, but listen to what other people say, too. They might have good advice.
Fear can give you urgent wings.
When I was a child I had a best friend who lived across the road from me. When her mother died unexpectedly it was like losing a member of my own family. I think I am still affected by the memory of that loss.
Being a librarian certainly helped me with my writing because it made me even more of a reader, and I was always an enthusiastic reader. Writing and reading seem to me to be different aspects of a single imaginative act.
Do you think that clothes have a life of their own, and maybe have unsuitable affairs with opposite styles? I mean - you look at some people - their clothes go on flirting long after the people inside them have lost interest.
In a way, the characters often do take over.
It can certainly happen that characters in more sophisticated stories can "take over" as they develop and change the author's original ideas. Well, it certainly happens to me at times.
You can't say you want things to be simple and then in the next breath ask me to be honest.
There are certainly times when my own everyday life seems to retreat so the life of the story can take me over. That is why a writer often needs space and time, so that he or she can abandon ordinary life and "live" with the characters.
When you are writing, of course, you have to do all that writing and correcting for yourself. When I was a librarian it was expected that I would know about a wide range of books.
Of course there are big differences in length and character and vocabulary, but each level has its particular pleasures when it comes to the words one can use and the way one uses them.
The novels take longer to write than the picture book texts, and they do take a different sort of concentration. However, a very short, simple story that works well is just as exciting to me as any longer and more complex book.
I know things are unbearable but in spite of that we have to bear them.
a man who builds a house never really dies.
Family!... You might just as well celebrate battle, murder and sudden death.
There's a lot of things you can put up with, as long as you're not related to them.
Canadians are Americans with no Disneyland.
I was able to work out all sorts of attitudes to style and event and character, all of which affected the way I came to think about my own writing. I believe that all good writers are original.
If a job's worth doing, it's worth doing twice.
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